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Bat infestation forces KIPP Believe Primary to move to temporary site; school to reopen on Holy Rosary campus Thursday

Photo provided by Marta Jewson, The Lens -- A bat infestation at Benjamin Banneker Elementary School forced KIPP Believe staff to pack up classrooms and relocate.

A bat infestation at KIPP Believe Primary caused school officials to cancel classes Wednesday and scramble to relocate to the Holy Rosary campus in order to resume classes on Thursday. “In the last few days it’s gotten increasingly worse,” School Leader Sarah Beth Greenberg said. An increase of bat sightings at the K-3… Continue reading →

New Orleans charter school hit with scathing accusations on special ed students

The Louisiana Department of Education on Tuesday released a scathing report about an independent charter school in New Orleans called Lagniappe Academies, accusing the Treme school’s leadership of failing to provide services for students with special needs and attempting to hide the fact from state officials. The report came as a rare acknowledgement on the part… Continue reading →

Tulane looking for ways to end annual $20M deficits, won't rule out layoffs

Advocate file photo

Even Tulane University, New Orleans’ richest educational institution, isn’t immune to the financial pressures facing higher education. The 13,500-student university has hired a Chicago consulting firm to find ways to close an annual cash deficit of nearly $20 million and to make the 181-year-old school more efficient. At the same time, Tulane is preparing… Continue reading →

Loyola announces academic reorganization

Advocate staff photo by RUSTY COSTANZA -- Graduates enter the Mercedes-Benz Superdome at the beginning of the Loyola University graduation ceremony last spring. Loyola announced a restructuring of its internal colleges Wednesday.

In its second major shake-up since Hurricane Katrina, Loyola University announced Wednesday that it will reshuffle its academic programs as part of a long-range plan aimed at coping with the university’s flagging enrollment and its multimillion-dollar deficit. The new plan scraps a school formed during Loyola’s last, controversial restructuring in 2006, splitting its departments… Continue reading →

Amid budget cuts, declining enrollment Loyola reveals restructing plan that restores, cuts colleges

Advocate staff photo by JOHN MCCUSKER -- Loyola University, New Orleans, Wednesday, July 10, 2013. Loyola announced a restructuring of its colleges Wednesday, February 25, 2015.

Loyola University in New Orleans has announced restructuring plans that include the restoration of the university's College of Arts and Sciences and the creation of a new College of Graduate and Professional Studies. The move comes as the university deals with declining enrollment and budget deficits in recent years. In its announcement Wednesday, the university said that the new College… Continue reading →

Archbishop Rummel High School principal Michael Scalco to step down

Michael Scalco

The principal of Archbishop Rummel High School has tendered his resignation at the Metairie Catholic school, which has faced continued declining enrollment. Michael Scalco, who is also the school’s chief executive officer, informed the Archdiocese of New Orleans of his intention to step down after the current school year, though it’s… Continue reading →

RSD announces charters that will move into Andrew Wilson and Livingston buildings; John McDonogh future tied up in court

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON-- Students leave John McDonogh High School in New Orleans, La. Friday, Jan. 17, 2014.

State officials on Tuesday announced which charter school operators will take over the former Andrew H. Wilson school in Broadmoor and the Livingston campus in New Orleans East, but a lawsuit delayed word on who will take over a third campus, the John McDonogh High School building on Esplanade Avenue. A group called InspireNOLA,… Continue reading →

Recovery School District to announce new operators for 3 Orleans schools

RSD to announce school operators

State officials plan this week to spell out the future of three school buildings that have come up for grabs in New Orleans — one in Broadmoor, another in Esplanade Ridge and a third in New Orleans East. Each campus has housed a charter school operator that failed to meet the state’s requirements for lifting test… Continue reading →

KIPP Renaissance High students to return to class after protest of new security policy

Students will return to KIPP Renaissance High School on Monday after security concerns led to an unexpected two-day shutdown immediately before Mardi Gras break. On Feb. 11, 450 ninth- through 12th-grade students were sent home after some students refused to cooperate with a new school security policy, KIPP spokesman Jonathan Bertsch said. Some students… Continue reading →

Tulane offers dual MD/MBA program, and other news of higher education

Tulane offers dual MD/MBA program The Tulane University School of Medicine and the A.B. Freeman School of Business have created a new program that allows students to earn a master of business administration degree with their medical degree. The four-year accelerated program was created to meet a growing need for physicians with business training,… Continue reading →

State budget cuts could mean dire results for UNO, SUNO

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER --  Dr. Peter Fos president of the University of New Orleans.

The leaders of New Orleans’ two public four-year universities offered grim takes Thursday on how they’ll cope with the deep cuts to higher education funding that are being contemplated as state lawmakers work to close a $1.6 billion gap in the state budget. The University of New Orleans may move to declare a financial emergency… Continue reading →

Jefferson Parish School Board to weigh $50 million bond issue to help finance capital improvements

The Jefferson Parish Public School Board will meet at 2:15 p.m. Thursday to discuss whether to give preliminary approval to a sales tax bond issue of up to $50 million that would be used toward more than $128 million of proposed capital improvements. The School Board gave notice of the special meeting on Wednesday. It… Continue reading →

Tulane to host environmental summit, and other higher education news

Tulane to host environmental summit The Tulane University Law School will host its 20th annual Summit on Environmental Law and Policy this month. Three keynote speakers and 16 panels of experts from around the world will gather Feb. 27-28 to discuss a wide range of environmental and energy topics. The panels will focus on… Continue reading →

Almost half of flashing school zone lights in New Orleans on the fritz; survey finds many problems

One afternoon a couple of weeks ago, Michele Benson Huck was driving down Broad Place near St. Rita Catholic School in Uptown New Orleans. The flashing lights indicating she was in a school zone were malfunctioning — again — but she slowed down anyway. The driver behind her responded by honking and trying to pass. Drivers routinely… Continue reading →

Consul considers French high school in city

The French consul general, his government’s top representative in New Orleans, has been actively exploring how to advance the idea of a French high school in the city, he said last week. Officials at a number of elementary schools that offer French immersion programs have long discussed such an idea, but one of the fundamental concerns… Continue reading →

New Orleans Recovery District tops national school choice rankings

New Orleans’ Recovery School District topped the national rankings in the Brookings Institution’s 2014 Education Choice and Competition Index. The web app scores large school districts on 13 categories of policy and practice, with leaders recognized based on the design and implementation of choice and competition systems. The criteria include maximum choice; a process… Continue reading →

Comedian to speak at Tulane commencement, and other news of higher education

Comedian to speak at Tulane commencement Actress and comedian Maya Rudolph, who gained fame as a cast member of “Saturday Night Live” and has appeared in films such as “Bridesmaids” and “Away We Go,” will deliver the keynote address at Tulane University’s 2015 commencement ceremony May 16 in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Rudolph’s father, Richard,… Continue reading →

Tulane professor to be NSF dean-in-residence, and other news of higher education

Tulane professor to be NSF dean-in-residence Brian Mitchell, a professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering at Tulane University, has been named the Council of Graduate Schools/National Science Foundation Dean-in-Residence for 2015-16. Mitchell, who served as Tulane’s associate provost for graduate studies and research from 2006 to 2014, will assume the position Feb. 1. He will… Continue reading →

Morris Jeff School moves into new $29 million home in Mid-City

Photo provided by The Lens/Marta Jewson --  Second grade teachers check out a model classroom on their first day inside their new school.

A yellow sticky note with the word “Sears” scribbled on it identified veteran teacher Erin Sears’ new classroom. “Welcome to my room,” she said, beaming at the doorway as she greeted her fellow second-grade teachers late last month. Sears and about 80 other educators at Morris Jeff Community School were taking a first look… Continue reading →

Can schools create gifted students? One La. district gives extra support to high-potential minority students

Sally Meredith’s reading class looks different from most at Albert Cammon Middle School in St. Rose. Meredith, an eighth-grade teacher at the school, doesn’t spend her fifth-period reading class helping her 13-year-old students through difficult passages or having them read aloud. Instead, she largely lets her students take charge in debates over questions she… Continue reading →

Six candidates apply to be Jefferson schools superintendent

Michelle Blouin-Williams

Six candidates have applied to replace James Meza as superintendent of Jefferson Parish Public Schools, and the School Board president promises the selection process will be open and transparent. Cedric Floyd said the exact shape of the process will be determined in the next week. He said there still could be other applicants because… Continue reading →

Jefferson Parish schools deputy superintendent applies for top job

About 30 days after the Jefferson Parish public school system began its search for a new superintendent, the outgoing superintendent’s hand-picked successor submitted the first application for the job. The system received an application from Deputy Superintendent Michelle Blouin-Williams on Wednesday evening, School Board President Cedric Floyd said. Applications must be postmarked by Thursday,… Continue reading →

Orleans School Board finally chooses new superintendent

Henderson Lewis Jr.

After almost three years under what was supposed to be temporary leadership, locally controlled public schools in New Orleans finally are set to get a new, permanent superintendent. The Orleans Parish School Board voted unanimously Tuesday night to select East Feliciana Parish Schools Superintendent Henderson Lewis Jr. to run the schools in New Orleans that remain… Continue reading →